Remembering “Ellery Street”

When I first knew David Ferry he was in a dry spell as a poet, after his wonderful first book On the Way to the Island. No one, not even David himself, could have anticipated the great, unique flowering of poetry and translation that was to come.

In 1971 the poet Barry Spacks, then teaching at MIT, invited David and me to help form a group of poets who would meet once a week to discuss our new work. David, Barry, and I were joined by Frank Bidart and Joyce Peseroff. Among the five of us, only Barry and David had published books.